Matthias Strobel


C5: Functional characterisation of bacterial type III effectors targeting host cell vesicle trafficking

Principal investigator
Frederik Börnke


Identification and characterization of the trehalose-6 phosphate pathway in plants

Cellular homeostasis critically depends on signalling systems that transmit information on the current internal and external conditions. In addition to their function as energy carrier and storage unit sugars can act as signalling molecules that route information about the cell's metabolic status and its growth and developmental status. Recent studies have indicated that trehalose and the metabolism associated with its synthesis are included in the plants sugar signalling system. Trehalose is a nonreducing disaccharide that is ubiquitous and usually synthesisized by a two-step process in a variety of organisms including bacteria, yeast, plants and invertebrates. Due to the fact that it is only present in trace amounts in higher plants, it is supposed that it does not function as a carbon source but rather exhibits a signalling function. In Arabidopsis there are 11 TPS genes identified, as only TPS1 displays enzymatic function, there is a high chance that they might be involved in regulatory networks. In this project further components of a yet unknown mechanism are to be identified and characterized.


Figure: Schematic model of the trehalose synthesis and the affected processes. Recent studies have revealed the importance of trehalose-6-phosphate and its synthesizing metabolism. Effects on carbon metabolism, flowering, cell division and involvement in stress resistance have been published. As the molecular mechanism behind it remains unclear, components and molecular players are to be discovered. TPS: Trehalose-6-phosphate-synthase; TPP: Trehalose-6-phosphat-phosphatase